Saturday, March 28, 2009

Surface that feels like the depth

It’s weird I was in Goodwill earlier today and I noticed this stuffed animal almost cute but not quite because it was a little stereotyped towards bear with googly eyes but so soft I would’ve snatched it up except it smelled like a scented candle and I imagined it in my apartment scenting me. I almost thought of getting it for my mother because of how she wanted to keep my childhood hippo, isn’t it strange how I can want to give her kindness to replace something she didn’t want to give me? I wanted to hug that not-quite-bear at Goodwill so soft I felt kind of child happy like last night, 2:30 am and this cute dog with someone texting maybe to get in the building one of these little dogs like maybe a bulldog or a pug I don’t know anything about what dogs are called really. This was the kind that waddles with sleek brown fur I bent down to pet it and it made kind of a snorting sound it made me think I should pet more dogs, let go of my fear of their smells.

Then today I’m talking to my mother on the phone and just when I think she’s going to ask if she can stop giving me money, instead she asks what she can do to help. It’s always surprising when she actually sounds concerned in a way that isn’t only about her. She wanted to know if I wanted more feldenkrais, or a different acupuncturist, or other options she kept using that word options you’ve thought of three more options, she said. To get you out of that cycle, it’s hard when you’re in that cycle.

I almost wanted to keep her on the phone because I was confused that she hadn’t yet said anything fucked up. Except that one of her suggestions was more time talking with Amy, remember Amy? Amy was my mother and father’s couples therapist before my father died and my mother kept talking and talking about how maybe I could do phone sessions with Amy, since once I’d talked to Amy about my parents’ relationship, and I kind of liked her. So then I decided to talk to Amy, just before going on tour and it was kind of helpful to talk about how to get my mother to create the account she’d promised, the account that Amy couldn’t believe my mother was promising and refusing, the refusing part was what shocked Amy and that felt supportive, since Amy was basically the same person as my mother, I think she said that. No, she said: I am your mother. Meaning: same profession, same class, same age, same geographical area.

We were talking about my hopelessness when confronted with this choice my mother could make to give me something like comfort or safety and instead her retreat towards power and control. Amy and I were talking about facilitating a conversation with the three of us, that’s what Amy wanted, but I didn’t think we were ready. When I visited my mother she started freaking out, saying suddenly your health care expenses have gotten so high or maybe that was over the phone, after I visited. And the only thing that had changed was that I had scheduled those appointments with the therapist who my mother had tried to get me to talk to for years, the therapist who was certainly double or triple the price of anyone who I would ever see, and even though I told my mother that she still kept repeating: your expenses have gotten so high. And here she is, suggesting Amy again. She would never pay for a therapist of my choice -- they give you false memories, right?

I didn’t mention that my mother isn’t creating the account, I mean it’s not going to happen. Another conversation with her and her financial planner and then they talked about it and decided it wasn’t a possibility, more or less. Lies in between, always lies. The strange thing is it actually made me feel some sort of relief, relief that I didn’t have to hope for this kind of security anymore. Now I can hope for other things that I’m not going to get, but at least I know that they’re fantasies, right?

That’s the surface that feels like the depth, and beneath it is probably the familiarity of endless sadness dragging me down into sleep please more sleep it doesn’t help. Then there’s the sadness about Derek and I wish I would just see him so at least I wouldn’t have to think about what happens when I see him for the first time. Then I wonder why I’m so exhausted, here are these core things that are empty.


kayti said...

This surface has no depth. Trust me I know from experience what I am talking about.

mattilda bernstein sycamore said...

True enough, I'm sure...

Love --